I used the wifi in the backpackers this morning to update the last seven days of the blog and to get some stuff done. We packed our stuff and left for breakfast and good coffee. Breann and Jay spotted one of the most curious cafes ever – it looked like a garage sale in the 70’s (you could actually buy everything that was in the cafe) and in between there were tables, couches and chairs (also for sale). Breakfast was great and as hobos we felt really home in the place ?

I quickly strolled through town to organise a few things: ductape, playing cards, a new cover for my map, 2nd lotion for a next possible eye infection, new skin tape and I decided to send my loved boots off to my second home in Auckland.

Sarah now has more stuff from me at her place than I am still carrying with me. Thank you so much!!

Since the sole was broken I only used my trail runners for the last few days and I felt good even in the mountains and the tricky parts. Saves me another 1.8kg which I don’t have to either carry on my feet or in my backpack. I am still a little bit sad to let them go for now – don’t take it personal!
Funny shot – they even have a “Holz-Stüberl” here!

At around 1pm we positioned ourselves at the road again and took turns in holding the thumb up asking for somebody to give us a ride. Breann so far is the most successful one with her dramatic waving dance which stopped quiet a few cars already ? We were super lucky since a guy pulled over who worked at the power station right at the beginning of the trail. Since his truck was full of equipment and the passenger seat and he entire back of the car was full of it he took 10 minutes to clean everything up to make room for us and our backpacks. Again: Kiwis you are great people! Thanks for your great hospitality! It was an interesting drive and we had an intensive chat on energy production, hydropower and so on. After we got dropped off I quickly picked up my contact lenses which I had sent to the lodge in Lake Coleridge and off we went. 30km of gravel road walk… The views though were beautiful – the Rangitata River on the one side and Lake Coleridge on the other side.

We continued until almost 8pm when a local hunter pulled up next to us.

Since we were all running low on water we asked him for the next reliable water source and he offered to take is the last km to the campsite.

Yes, a little bit of cheating but our feet were thankful and we are on vacation and not on the run ?
Pitched he tents, cooked dinner and quickly went into the tents – sandflies were eating us alive! Treated my eye infection since yesterday evening with drops and it is clearly getting better. Everything seems to somehow break down these days but healing and fixing also goes fast – that’s at least fair.

And as a final comment very special greetings to a very special reader of this blog – my grandpa. He just turned 88 a few days ago and he told me that he follows every step of my travels through the blog and that he is very happy to improve his English skills by reading it. He literally sits I front of his computer translating all words he doesn’t know with a dictionary. So now he also knows what tussock is ?

I am very happy that you can participate in the trip and that you enjoy the pictures and reading! All the best from New Zealand!